Photograph of airmail plane at Reno, Nevada
Airmail employees transferring airmail bags from one de Havilland (DH-4B) aircraft to another at the Reno, Nevada airmail field. On September 8, 1920, the Post Office Department completed the western leg of the nation's transcontinental flyway. Mail was flown through Reno on its way between San Francisco, California and New York City, New York. The 1921 "Transcontinental Air Mail Pilot's Log of Distances, Landmarks, and Flying Directions" provided to all airmail employees described Reno's airmail field as follows: "The air mail field at Reno lies two miles west of the city. The main runway lies east and west. The field is marked by a T and wind indicator. And landing from four ways is unobstructed. Reno is 4,497 feet above sea level. Whenever possible it is advisable to leave the Reno field on the east-west runway, taking off to the east. A slight downgrade enables the ship to quickly obtain flying speed. Just beyond the east edge of the field the ground is extremely rough and there is a huge ditch here."
National Postal Museum, Curatorial Photographic Collection